Importers who which to turn into manufacturers are facing several challenges, said Matta Beshay, the Head of the Internal Trade Committee of the Importers Division of the Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce (FEDCOC).
Beshay said that the government recently offered importers facilities to convert to manufacturing instead of importing. However, the government did not practically clarify these incentives and facilities, according to Beshay.
He added that importers do not know methods of manufacturing and there is a significant increase in industrial land prices and problems in obtaining licenses.
Additionally, importers wishing to manufacture need specialised training courses as well as state protection for products that will be manufactured locally.
He also highlighted the importance of facilitating import movement, especially for goods that have no local alternative, in parallel with encouraging importers to switch to industry.
Furthermore, Beshay pointed out that switching to industrialisation does not mean a complete halt of imports, explaining that China and the US are among the largest producers and exporters and at the same time are the largest importers.
He called for a review of Resolution 43 regarding the registration of foreign factories qualified to export to Egypt, adding that importers face difficulties in importing their products as a result of delays from the General Organisation for Import and Export Control (GOEIC) in registering foreign factories in light of this decision.
The Ministry of Finance recently met with the local business community to discuss issues related to the private sector in the presence of the President of FEDCOC Ibrahim El Araby and representatives of the Federation of Egyptian Industries and the Importers and Exporters Division.
Beshay explained that the meeting discussed ways to maximise the private sector’s contributions towards achieving economic development. It also tackled ways to support sectors impacted by the pandemic, helping importers transition to industrialisation, and overcoming any obstacles they face.